PCV Editorial Team
Thirty Catholics participated in the first weekly “pray-in” at the St. Paul Cathedral on Tuesday, April 17. The weekly gathering is designed as “an expression of support for the inherent dignity of all God’s people and the promotion of the spiritual well-being of every family.”
Shortly after the individuals arrived to begin their prayer session they were met by the Pastor of the Cathedral, Fr. Joseph Johnson, who acknowledged the group’s right to stay and pray silently but prohibited them from praying out loud as a group.
Fr. Johnson stated that “public prayer” had to be approved in advance by his office. Fr. Johnson was clearly aware of the purpose of the gathering which he deemed to “contradict” the Church’s positions. When asked if the group could whisper the Rosary together, Fr. Johnson said no.
The group chose to stay and pray the Rosary silently, standing as a sign of respectful support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons and their families.
Vigil spokesperson, Barbara Frey, stated, “Through our presence we seek to emulate the expansive and inclusive love of Jesus, who always stood up for the most vulnerable.”
According to Frey, many Catholics are disturbed by the Archdiocese’s choice to expend funds to promote discrimination rather than to address the most urgent needs of the community.
The vigils will continue being held weekly at 6 pm in the Cathedral. All are welcome.
Recommended Off-site Links:
Conflicted Catholics: Consciences Wrestle with Church Actions on Marriage Amendment – Beth Hawkins (MinnPost, April 18, 2012).
"This is the Living Word" – Sensus Fidelium (March 28, 2012).
Church Officials Fail Us, But a Local Priest and Parish Shine – Jim Smith (Sensus Fidelium, April 11, 2012).
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